Superintendent's Corner: Open Houses, Scrap Metal & Electronics Drive and More

Superintendent Shawn Lewis provides information and insight on events in the district.

Credit: Royal Oak Schools
Credit: Royal Oak Schools

The following information was provided by Royal Oak schools chief Shawn Lewis-Lakin.

Open Houses!  Our Elementary School Open Houses are scheduled for April 1- April 3.   For a complete schedule, click here.  Please share this information with your neighbors and friends and invite them to discover the Community of Excellence that exists in our elementary schools.

Internet Birthday:  According to at least one source (NBC News), the World Wide Web is 25 years old as of March 12, 2014.  While the exact date of the internet’s birth is debated, there is no debate regarding the dramatic impact it has had on our lives. The internet brings both benefits and risks to our schools, our homes, and our families.   One of the best sources of information regarding how to be secure online is the OnGuardOnline.gov website, which includes multiple articles and videos on how to protect children online. This site includes helpful information on such topics as Kids and Socializing Online, Cyber-bullying, and Parental Controls. I encourage you to explore and use these resources. 

April Royal Oak Community Coalition Newsletter:   The Royal Oak Community Coalition mission is to “prevent substance abuse by sustaining & strengthening a safe and healthy community, together.”   The Coalition works to accomplish this goal through multiple strategies, including encouraging and promoting safe family friendly activities. Click here to view the Coalition’s April 2014 newsletter; be sure to see the special attachment to the newsletter, which includes special coupons and discounts for students and families to enjoy spring break activities in Royal Oak!  

Virtual Schools:  A new report by the National Education Policy Center reviews studies on student performance in virtual schools and suggests that these studies do not support further expansion of such schools.    The report notes that on all measures, virtual schools perform significantly below traditional brick and mortar schools.   To read the entire report, click here; for a summary of the report that recently appeared in MLive.com, click here.    As families consider the many educational options available for their children, my hope is that all do so with a clear understanding of the strengths and weakness of the various choices that are available. 

Royal Oak Scrap Metal and Electronics Drive:  Are you looking for a safe way to dispose of that old computer that is sitting in your basement? The Royal Oak Environmental Advisory Group is hosting a scrap metal and electronics drive onSaturday, May 3, 2014, 8 a.m. - 1 p.m. at the Department of Public Service Yard (1600 N. Campbell). If available, they will also have compost, chips and a paper shredder.  Nothing is too big or small - bring it all!  To learn more about the Royal Oak Environmental Advisory Group, visit the group’s Facebook Page.

Boys and Girls Club:  Royal Oak is incredibly fortunate to have multiple organizations that support children and youth.   The Boys & Girls Club of Oakland Macomb Counties –our Royal Oak Boys & Girls Club – has a strong partnership with our schools. I encourage you to visit the Boys and Girls Club website to learn about how participation with the Club might benefit your child. Several of our schools will be fielding teams that will participate in the 2014 Walk for the Future, a fundraising event for our Boys & Girls Club.  To learn more about this event, click here.

Calendar Notes:  Spring break is the week of April 7, 2014; there is no school scheduled for students on April 7-11. April 18 is also a non-school day for students. We are currently reviewing updated information from the state to determine whether any adjustments to the Royal Oak Schools 2013-2014 school year calendar will be necessary as a result the school cancellation days experienced this winter.   If an adjustment to the calendar is needed it will be presented to the Board of Education in early April and communicated to families immediately following.  

Family Information Updates:  Are you changing your e-mail address?  Do you have a new phone number?  You can edit your contact information or change your password to something you'll remember at the MISTAR Parent Portal. If you are moving, you are not able to update your address using the Parent Portal.   All address changes must be made with the district central enrollment office, which is located at 1123 Lexington Blvd, Royal Oak, MI  48073.


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